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How does Shakespeare make Act 3 Scene 5 of 'Romeo and Juliet' especially dramatic?

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Introduction

How does Shakespeare make Act 3 Scene 5 of 'Romeo and Juliet' especially dramatic? Explain and comment on the varying thoughts and feelings of the characters in this scene. What techniques do you think are particularly successful in creating dramatic tension? 'Romeo and Juliet', is a story of two young lovers, whose love was destined for destruction. They did not imagine that their love would lead to the tragedies that it did but with the constant pressures from their feuding families it soon ended in their tragic demise. Act 3 Scene 5 is of great importance since it reveals the anxious feelings and emotions of many characters. Events occur here, which have long-term consequences for the rest of the plays events; hence the scene can be viewed as a turning point. Act 3 Scene 5 starts off in Juliet's bedroom. The atmosphere is calm and quiet and shows intimacy between the two. Juliet awakes to the sound of a bird singing which she thinks is the nightingale symbolically the night bird. She is desperate to keep Romeo with her, almost convincing him to stay, but he is more reluctant. Romeo appears more edgy and alert and is certain, that it is the day bird the lark, as he can now see the light. He uses the metaphor 'The night's candles are burnt out', meaning the stars have been burnt from the night sky. Light normally represents hope but this time is symbolising danger for him. ...read more.

Middle

She says how she forgives him even though he has hurt her heart, meaning she is upset about being separated from him, not over what he's done: 'Villain and he be many miles asunder. -- God Pardon him! I do, with all my heart; And yet no man like he doth grieve my heart'. Constantly theatre viewers are on edge here because they wonder whether Juliet's double meanings will gave away her true feelings about her supposed enemy in front of her mother. In lines 78 - 80 the lack of intimacy between Lady Capulet and Juliet is shown again as they refer to each other in conversation as 'madam' and 'girl'. This coldness hints that Lady Capulet will not support her daughter when she really needs her to do so. The lack of intimacy between Juliet and her parents is shown again when Lady Capulet informs Juliet that her father has a way to cheer her up, by suggesting marriage plans to Paris. Juliet lived in the time of the patriarchal society so she had no choice in this matter. Husbands were chosen to bring families together, not to be a love match. This news is unexpected by Juliet and she is initially unaware of it and the audience wonders when she will find out, this builds up the suspense of the scene, as you don't know how Juliet will react or what she will do to prevent it. ...read more.

Conclusion

O, he's a lovely gentleman! Romeo's a dishclout to him: an eagle, madam, Hath not so green, so quick, so fair an eye As Paris hath'. The Nurse is being pragmatic here, saying Juliet needs to make the best of a bad situation. Romeo is banished, probably never to return, so the better choice is Paris in these circumstances' Juliet is shocked and appalled by what she sees as the Nurse's fickle attitude and feels that everyone is against her, she now turns on her former companion, the one person she felt would be with her. 'Go, counsellor; Thou and my bosom henceforth shall be twain. I'll to the friar, to know his remedy: If all else fail, myself have power to die.' Juliet decides to go Friar Laurence for help, as her relationship with the Nurse is now torn apart, before they were like Mother and daughter but now the intimacy has gone. Juliet here even goes so far as to label the Nurse as devil-like, cursing her dramatically so the viewers would be shocked. Again, the threat of suicide if there is no way of Friar Lawrence resolving her dilemma gives a fearful feeling to the scene's end, making viewers want to continue watching the rest of the play. Act 3 Scene 5 is a highly dramatic section of the play. The characters and their wild emotions make this so, along with the intense, cramped setting and the range of effective language techniques, such as ambiguous language and metaphors, used my Shakespeare throughout it. Hannah Ventham 11KJH ...read more.

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